Psychology can be defined as the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. The courses in the Psychology Department are designed to acquaint students with psychological theory and the findings of psychological researchers; familiarize students with the terminology and principles of cognition and behavior; provide education in the techniques of psychological investigation with an emphasis on empirical research; study ways in which psychological principles apply to practical situations; and relate the findings of psychology to Christian faith. Psychology department courses interface with numerous other Bethel majors, including biology, business, nursing, biokinetics, philosophy, and many others. The Psychology Department also works with the Biological Sciences Department in running the neuroscience major. A Master of Arts in Counseling is offered through the graduate school. An Addiction Studies certificate can be obtained through dual enrollment with the College of Adult and Professional Studies. 

The required senior capstone options provide an opportunity for students to gain hands-on experience, either with a 135 hour internship or independent research supervised by a faculty member. The seminar portion of the capstone provides more intensive time to interact with faith/psychology integration issues. The senior capstone experiences helps students to refine career goals and graduate study plans as well as offer opportunities to integrate classroom learning with experience.

Major in Psychology

Minor in Psychology

PSY 100 • Introduction to Psychology 3 Credits.

Methods, theories, and principal findings of psychological investigation.
Offered: Fall, spring.

PSY 130 • Introduction to Neuroscience 3 Credits.

An introduction to the biological basis of behavior. Focuses on two main themes: the cellular, molecular, and genetic processes that form the foundation of nervous system function and the systems-level organization of the nervous system that forms the foundation of human and animal behavior.
Corequisites: Concurrent registration in PSY 130D is required. Offered: Spring. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in Biology and Neuroscience.

PSY 130D • Introduction to Neuroscience Lab 1 Credit.

Laboratory experience accompanying PSY 130.
Corequisites: Concurrent registration in PSY 130 is required. Offered: Spring. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in Biology and Neuroscience.

PSY 203 • Lifespan Development 3 Credits.

Physical, cognitive, emotional, social, moral, and spiritual development from conception to death. Includes a consistent focus on individual differences.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Fall, spring. Special Notes: Students may not receive credit for PSY 203 if they receive credit for PSY 206.

PSY 206 • Child and Adolescent Development 3 Credits.

Interacting processes of physical, cognitive, social, emotional, moral, and spiritual development from conception through adolescence. Includes observations of children.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Fall. Special Notes: Students may not receive credit for both PSY 206 and PSY 203.

PSY 211 • Adult Development and Aging 3 Credits.

Interacting processes of physical, cognitive, social, emotional, moral, and spiritual development and change from early adulthood until death.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Spring

PSY 215 • Social Psychology 3 Credits.

Behavior and experience of individuals and groups in relation to other individuals and groups. Theory, method, and findings in areas such as conformity, persuasion, social cognition, attraction, altruism, aggression, prejudice, group behavior, and applied topics.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Fall, spring

PSY 230M • Introduction to Statistical Methods and Experimental Design 4 Credits.

Descriptive, correlational, and inferential statistics, plus experimental design. Parametric and nonparametric statistical techniques are taught with emphasis on designing and conducting two-group experiments and analyzing the data.
Offered: Fall, Spring. Special Notes: Students may not receive credit for both PSY 230M and MAT 207M or HAS 250M.

PSY 300 • Abnormal Psychology 3 Credits.

Classification, causes, symptoms, and treatment of various forms of psychopathology. Analysis of Christian and secular perspectives of psychopathology and a survey of some major issues in the field of mental health.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Fall, Occasionally interim, Spring.

PSY 304 • Introduction to Forensic Psychology 3 Credits.

Provides students the opportunity to explore psychological and social processes in the legal, judicial, and criminal investigation systems. Emphasis is placed upon students developing the capacity to evaluate relevant research theory and application in forensic psychology.
Prerequisites: An introductory social sciences course (PSY 100, SOC 101, or ANT 200U); a quantitative research course in the social sciences (PSY 230M or SOC 351); or consent of instructor. Offered: Fall, even # years.

PSY 305 • Personality 3 Credits.

Examination of traditional and contemporary theories of personality, with an emphasis on comparing and contrasting these theories. Explores non-western and Christian perspectives of the description and development of personality.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Spring

PSY 308G • Cross-Cultural Psychology 3 Credits.

Behavior and experience related to cultural differences. Theory, method, and findings in areas of cognition, social psychology, and applied concerns. Specific people groups may be emphasized.
Prerequisites: [GES 130; GES 160; Contemporary Western Life and Thought (L) course; World Cultures (U) course] or [GES 244; World Cultures (U) course]. Offered: Spring

PSY 310 • Addiction and Recovery 3 Credits.

Psychological, physiological, and causal aspects of addiction, with emphasis on understanding the experience of persons with addiction. Addictions studied include drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, and the internet. Also covers family issues related to addiction, models of recovery, and treatment options. Integration of Christianity with this topic throughout the course.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Interim

PSY 313G • Families in Cross-cultural Perspective 3 Credits.

Contemporary, historical, and cross-cultural, predominantly non-Western perspective on a variety of family systems and the people living in them. Explores values and assumptions underlying these systems, roles, intergenerational relationships, identity formation, and developmental tasks.
Prerequisites: [GES 130; Contemporary Western Life and Thought (L) course; World Cultures (U) course] or [GES 246; World Cultures (U) course]. Offered: Fall

PSY 315 • History of Psychology 3 Credits.

Historical roots of contemporary psychology. Focus is on the influence of historical trends, people, and events on the evolution of psychological questions, constructs, methods, and issues.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; junior or senior standing. Offered: Spring.

PSY 316 • Consciousness: Psychology and Philosophy in Dialogue 3 Credits.

A team-taught investigation of ancient, medieval, and modern philosophies of consciousness and the historical roots of contemporary psychology. Shows how philosophical and psychological theories of consciousness transcend disciplinary boundaries. Focuses on interaction between philosophy and psychology, emphasizing the origins of cognitive science in philosophy of mind and consciousness.
Prerequisites: PSY 100 or one philosophy course. Offered: Occasionally. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in philosophy.

PSY 317 • Political Psychology 3 Credits.

Political psychology is concerned with the causes, dynamics, and consequences of human thinking and action in the context of politics. This field survey covers the psychology of decision making, political attitude formation, public opinion, personality and emotions, intergroup relations, ideology, and the role of mass media in politics.
Prerequisites: One political science course. Offered: Fall, odd # years. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in political science.

PSY 320Z • European Pioneers in Psychology 3 Credits.

A study-abroad experience that explores prominent European figures in the history of psychology within the context of the major historical currents and schools. Study of the cultural, philosophical, intellectual, and spiritual roots of psychological theory—especially in connection with our host countries. Site and museum visits, and encounters with local professional and academic psychologists.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; Junior or senior standing; permission of instructors; timely completion of application process. Offered: Occasionally interim.

PSY 323 • Motivation and Emotion 4 Credits.

How biological, environmental, cognitive, emotional, and personal systems interact to initiate and direct human behavior. How experimental psychologists study emotional and motivational systems.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; PSY 230M. Offered: Fall.

PSY 325G • Psychology of Religion 3 Credits.

Topics of central importance within many world religions (e.g., wisdom, love) are examined through various psychological theories and empirical findings. Major emphasis on developing the capacity to understand religious behavior and experience from the psychological and religious perspectives studied in the course, regardless of the extent to which one agrees or disagrees with a particular viewpoint.
Prerequisites: [GES 130; GES 160; Contemporary Western Life and Thought (L) course; World Cultures (U) course] or [GES 244; World Cultures (U) course]. Offered: Spring

PSY 330 • Disabilities and Giftedness 4 Credits.

Focus on the development of individuals with disabilities and giftedness from a lifespan perspective. Cognitive, physical, emotional, and sociocultural variables relevant to developmental delay; giftedness; learning disabilities; physical, sensory, and communication disabilities; emotional disturbance; and multiple disabilities. Critical analysis of psychosocial educational interventions. Service learning with those with disabilities.
Prerequisites: EDU 240, PSY 203, PSY 206, or PSY 211; Junior standing. Offered: Fall.

PSY 335 • Tests and Measurement 4 Credits.

Methods of assessing human behavior and the nature and significance of individual differences. Includes basic psychometric theory; principles of test construction; and theory and utilization of current standardized tests of intelligence, achievement, and personality.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; PSY 230M. Offered: Spring

PSY 337K • Behavioral Robotics 3 Credits.

Control and automation are fundamental aspects of human, animal, and machine behavior. These topics will be considered from philosophical and psychological perspectives and explored through robotics and other hands-on experimental labs, in order to develop both a practical and theoretical understanding of behavior.
Prerequisites: Laboratory Science (D) course; Mathematics (M) course. Offered: Occasionally interim, occasionally spring. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in computer science.

PSY 340 • Physiological Psychology 3 Credits.

Physiological and neuroanatomical mechanisms underlying behavior; sensory mechanisms, wakefulness, and attention processes; and brain mechanisms of aggression, fear, pain, thirst, reproductive behavior, learning, and discrimination processes.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; Mathematics (M) course. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 341 is required. Offered: Fall.

PSY 341 • Physiological Psychology Lab 1 Credit.

Laboratory experience accompanying PSY 340.
Corequisites: Registration in PSY 340 is required. Offered: Fall.

PSY 346 • Animal Behavior 3 Credits.

Behavior from primitive invertebrates to advanced mammals, highlighting trends in behavior systems. Natural setting studies in the ethology tradition, comparative psychology studies, and biosociological principles with their implications for human social systems.
Prerequisites: One course in Biology or PSY 100. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 347 is required. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in biological sciences. Offered: Spring, odd # years.

PSY 347 • Animal Behavior Lab 1 Credit.

Laboratory course accompanying PSY 346.
Corequisites: Registration in PSY 346 is required. Offered: Spring, odd # years. Special Notes: Carries cross-credit in biological sciences.

PSY 348 • Conditioning and Learning 3 Credits.

Basic procedures of classical and operant conditioning, theories of learning, and applications of behavioral conditioning principles to selected problems in human learning. Includes laboratory experiences.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; Mathematics (M) course. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 349 is required. Offered: Spring.

PSY 349 • Conditioning and Learning Lab 1 Credit.

Laboratory experience accompanying PSY 348.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; Mathematics (M) course. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 348 is required. Offered: Spring.

PSY 350 • Cognitive Psychology 4 Credits.

Psychological theory and research concerning thinking, memory, reasoning, language, and problem solving. Includes laboratory experience.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; PSY 230M. Offered: Spring

PSY 355 • Research Principles and Laboratory 4 Credits.

Research methods in psychology in the context of designing independent research. Standard research designs (experimental, quasi-experimental, and non-experimental) are evaluated in terms of threats to internal and external statistical construct validity.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; PSY 230M. Offered: Fall, Spring.

PSY 357 • Research Seminar 3 Credits.

Students develop a research project with faculty supervision in preparation for independent research. Seminar format allows for in-depth analysis of contemporary issues in the field of psychological science, and students apply these issues to their personal projects.
Prerequisites: PSY 100, PSY 230M, PSY 355, and consent of instructor Offered: Spring.

PSY 399 • Topics in Psychology 3 Credits.

Contemporary concerns in psychology not covered in the current formal course offerings of the department.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Offered: Occasionally

PSY 400 • Principles of Counseling and Psychotherapy 4 Credits.

Introduction and analysis of major therapy systems from Christian and secular perspectives, basic counseling techniques, and current ethical issues facing the counseling professions. Designed for students planning graduate study in human services.
Prerequisites: PSY 100; PSY 300 or PSY 305. Offered: Fall, spring

PSY 430 • Advanced Psychopathology 4 Credits.

Explores issues pertaining to the nature and occurrence of psychological disorders, including classification, cultural context, developmental considerations, etiology, and treatment. Critical evaluation of contemporary theory and research, including conceptualizations, methodologies, and statistical approaches.
Prerequisites: PSY 300; PSY 355. Offered: Fall

PSY 440 • Sensation and Perception 3 Credits.

A study of how the brain receives and interprets information from the environment. The biological operation of each of the senses is covered, as well as how the action of sense organs is translated into meaningful perceptions.
Prerequisites: PSY 100. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 441 is required. Offered: Spring, odd # years.

PSY 441 • Sensation and Perception Lab 1 Credit.

Laboratory experience accompanying PSY 440. Prerequisites: PSY 100. Corequisites: Registration in PSY 440 is required.
Offered: Spring, odd # years.

PSY 481 • Internship in Psychology 3-4 Credits.

A directed experience relevant to psychology in an off-campus setting.
Prerequisites: Consent of supervising instructor. Offered: Fall, spring

PSY 493 • Psychology Internship and Seminar 4 Credits.

A professionally supervised, applied learning experience in the work world. The senior internship includes a seminar component in which students meet regularly with the Bethel faculty instructor. This structured experience will facilitate students’ processing of their internship experiences and offer a forum for discussion of internship-related issues and self career exploration related issues.
Prerequisites: Psychology major; Senior standing; minimum 2.25 GPA in psychology courses, 2.0 cumulative GPA. Offered: Spring, Summer

PSY 498 • Research 2-4 Credits.

Work with a psychology faculty member on an empirical research project. Emphasis on the use of research methodology, techniques, and psychological theory. The work may be spread over two semesters.
Prerequisites: Major in psychology; invitation of supervising faculty member; PSY 230M. Grade exceptions: Graded on an S/U basis. Offered: Fall, spring

PSY 499 • Senior Seminar 3 Credits.

Foundational issues in psychology and the interface of psychology, Christianity, and other disciplines. Includes an in-depth individual writing project.
Prerequisites: Major in psychology; senior standing. Offered: Fall, spring